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I recently found Strands of Fate and it looks like a really fun system; so, naturally, I want to run a short campaign in it to try it out. Unfortunately, the book doesn't seem to give any tips for how to set up encounters in terms of number and quality of NPCs so they're an appropriate challenge for the PCs.

In Legend, every group of characters is given an ecl equal to their highest character level plus the number of creatures (if it's greater then one) and you can figure out how tough a fight will be by comparing one groups ecl to another's. Is there a similar tool for Strands of Fate or some other way to benchmark an encounter's/NPC's power? Is there a guideline for assigning attributes and abilities or should I just focus on how the NPC's relevant totals compare to the PC's and assume they were worked out somehow?

Actually, I'm having a bit of a hard time trying to figure out what PCs can deal with in general, which is making it difficult to pick a CamPL.

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I have also missed that in Strands of Fate. In general though in Fate-based systems the most determining characteristic is the value of the top skill.

Typically players have a skill pyramid with a fix max value and that often goes for monsters as well. If the max skill of a monster is equal of the players one can assume that it will be quite effective in doing it's thing and it will be a serious fight. With lower max-skill it will be more of a pushover and with a max skill above the players it will be hard.

This might have to be modified by skill area. Like if all PCs are warlike characters with 4 in some combat skill low social skills (0-2) then a noble with a social skill of 3 will be a hard opponent in a social conflict and so on.

When it comes to other characteristics and number of opponents it becomes harder to judge.

Best thing to do in systems that are not heavily balanced is to go by trial and error. Throw the PCs in some situation and see how they do, then adjust accordingly. In Fate in particular the effectiveness of a group of PCs is very much dependent on their teamwork ability and the inventiveness of the players, you just have to feel it out.

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